Policy enforcements

Top invalid traffic and policy violations that lead to account closure

If your AdSense application has been disapproved, visit our help article on what to do next.

If your AdSense account is temporarily suspended for invalid traffic or policy violations, visit our help article on account suspensions for more information.

To help you understand why publishers may have their accounts disabled, we’ve outlined the most common reasons that accounts are disabled for invalid traffic or policy violations below. We hope that this information helps you to better understand our policies, and ensure that your account (i.e. all of your sites, YouTube channels and/or apps) remains compliant with our policies. Note that this is not a complete list, but the main causes. For more information, see the AdSense programme policies.

We want to maintain a strong ecosystem for both advertisers and publishers. As a publisher, you are responsible for maintaining high quality inventory and traffic. If the traffic that we receive from a publisher violates policies and/or is invalid, then that publisher will no longer be eligible to participate in AdSense or other publisher products. This kind of traffic is damaging to our advertisers, as well as legitimate publishers, as it can reduce advertisers’ trust in the rest of the network.

Common reasons AdSense accounts are disabled for invalid traffic

Expand all  Collapse all Clicking the ads on your own site, YouTube channel or app
  • Publishers must not click on the ads on their site, YouTube channel or app, and must not artificially inflate the impressions or clicks that the ads receive, either through automated or manual means. For YouTube publishers, when viewing your videos, you must skip the ad so that advertiser costs are not artificially inflated unintentionally.
  • If you'd like more information about one of the advertisers appearing on your website, please type the URL of the ad directly into your browser's address bar.
  • For AdMob publishers, use test ads (available for Android and iOS) to avoid generating invalid clicks on your apps.
One or more users repeatedly clicking the ads on your site, YouTube channel or app
  • Publishers must not artificially inflate the impressions or clicks that the ads receive, either through automated or manual means. This includes testing on live ads.
  • Don't encourage or ask your friends, family, co-workers, etc. to click your ads. If you have testers, ask them to avoid clicking live ads.
  • To test ads on YouTube channels, please skip the ad so that advertiser costs aren't artificially inflated unintentionally.
  • To test ads on AdMob apps, use test ads (available for Android and iOS) to avoid generating invalid clicks.
  • Publishers may not ask others to click their ads. This includes asking for users to support your site, YouTube channel, or app, offering rewards to users for clicking ads, and promising to raise money for third parties for such behaviour.
Generating or receiving automated or bot traffic
  • Artificial impressions and clicks that are generated through automated means such as a bot or deceptive software, are prohibited. Automated traffic can be generated by a publisher, or can be received through purchased traffic. It’s important to review traffic sources before you decide to work with a traffic source. Be aware of programs that check links within your site, YouTube channel, or app, as they may click ad links as well.
Using an incentivised traffic source
  • Publishers should not use third-party services that generate clicks or impressions such as paid-to-click, paid-to-surf, autosurf and click-exchange programmes.
Manipulating how ads are served
  • Manipulating the targeting of the ads to get higher revenue ads is prohibited. This includes using keywords in your site that aren't related to the content of your site to get irrelevant ads.
  • Ads should not be placed within IFRAMEs. Besides being prohibited, improper implementations can cause reporting discrepancies, and you won't be able to know where the ads are actually showing.
Encouraging users to support your site, YouTube channel or app through ad interaction
  • Publishers may not ask others to refresh or click their ads. This includes asking for users to support your site, YouTube channel or app, offering rewards to users for viewing ads or performing searches and promising to raise money for third parties for such behaviour.
  • For AdMob, there are rewarded ads available through third-party mediation (for Android and iOS). Please note that incentivised behaviour on regular AdMob ads is still prohibited.
Ad placement deceptive for users or generating accidental clicks
  • Publishers aren't permitted to encourage users to click Google ads in any way. This includes, but isn't limited to:
    • Implementing the ads in a way that they might be mistaken for other content, such as menu, navigation or download links.
    • modifying the ad size to be nonstandard and invisible or hard to see for the user.
    • placing ads too close to elements on the page or screen that require heavy mouse or touch interaction. Please review the guidelines for implementations that are considered deceptive.
  • Please review our ad placement policies to find out about ad implementations that are considered deceptive.
  • Read our AdSense blog post on click-jacking to find out how Google is combating attempts to trick users to click ads.
Ads embedded in applications
  • Publishers aren't permitted to embed ads in software applications. This includes toolbars, desktop applications, browser extensions, etc. At times this can also include applications hosted through third-party sites when the implementation is leading to invalid clicks from users who don't intend to click on the ads, but do so accidentally. Publishers who choose to serve in mobile applications should do so only with the AdMob SDK. There is also AdSense for video or AdSense for games SDK for those serving within videos or flash content.
If your account has already been disabled for invalid traffic, see AdSense account disabled for invalid activity for more information.

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Common reasons that AdSense accounts are disabled for policy reasons

Pornographic, adult or mature content
  • The AdSense network is considered family-safe, which means that publishers aren't permitted to place Google ads on sites which contain pornography, adult or mature content. If your site has content which you wouldn't be comfortable viewing at work or with family members around, then it probably isn't an appropriate site on which to place Google ads. View detailed examples of adult content that violate the AdSense programme policies.
  • For tips, see our keeping the network family-safe blog post.
User-generated content
  • We understand that it’s challenging for publishers with an extensive network of sites to constantly monitor every single page. However, it’s important to be aware that any pages containing your ad code must comply with our programme policies whether it’s your content or user-generated content.
  • For tips, see our monitoring user-generated content blog post.
Violating webmaster guidelines
Deceptive ad placement
  • Encouraging invalid clicks, that is, misleading labels, misleading to click, unnatural attention, deceptive layout:
    • Publishers aren't permitted to encourage users to click Google ads in any way. This includes implementing the ads in a way that they might be mistaken for other website content, such as menu, navigation or download links.
  • For more information, see our ad placement optimisations blog post.
Copyright infringement
  • Google ads may not be displayed on websites with content protected by copyright law unless they have the necessary legal rights to display or direct traffic to that content. Some examples of copyrighted content might include mp3 and video files, television shows, software, comics and literary works. When a website displays someone else's website within a frame or window on their own site, this is considered framing content. Placing Google ads on such pages is strictly prohibited.
Illegal content
  • Google ads may not be placed on any site that promotes or permits any form of criminal activity. This includes but is not limited to underage, non-consensual or illegal sex acts, the production of false legal documents or sale of essays or other materials that promote fraudulent activity, or sites that drive traffic to or provide instructions about manufacturing counterfeit or replica designer goods.
If your account has already been disabled for policy reasons, see AdSense account disabled for policy reasons for more information.

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